S. Korea will actively join global PKO missions: military
Published : 2015-07-03 21:59
Updated : 2015-07-03 21:59
South Korea will step up its participation in global peace-keeping operations, the military official in charge of foreign troops dispatch said Friday, as the country marks the three-year anniversary of PKO deployment in the violence-hit South Sudan.
With the 5th rotation of forces of the 290-strong "Hanbit" unit arriving in the South Sudanese town of Bor this week, South Korea marks three years since the dispatch of the rebuilding forces.
The Hanbit unit was dispatched to the town, located some 170 kilometers north of the capital Juba, in July 2011 while the newly-independent South Sudan was reeling from decades of civil war.
Since the deployment, the South Korean unit has been tasked with a variety of rebuilding and peace-keeping missions under the wing of the United Nation Mission in South Sudan, including infrastructure building in the war-torn country as well as other humanitarian aid activities.
As the latest South Sudanese Civil War broke out in December 2013, "the Hanbit unit perfectly carried out its top priority UN mission of protecting civilians," Major General Oh Jeong-il said in an interview with a pool reporter, later released by the Defense Ministry.
It was very effective in forming the crucial bond between the unit and the local people for Hanbit to have continued its humanitarian assistance operations for about 17,000 Bor war refugees even at the height of the civil war, Oh noted.
The South Korean unit is now at a critical crossroads in re-defining its role in the U.N. efforts to help South Sudan stand on its own feet, the major general stressed, adding that transferring South Korea's experience of speedy economic development would be the main focus of future operations.
"As our country owns the asset of being an economic success model, the role Hanbit could play in contributing to the development of South Sudan would be the transfer of development experiences," Oh noted.
As part of those efforts, the military will seek tighter collaboration with the Korea International Cooperation Agency, the official development assistance body, to better provide the services, he said.
As South Korea's other foreign-dispatched units, "Ahk" in the UAE and "Dongmyeong" in Lebanon, mark four and eight years of dispatch respectively, the country plans to reset strategies on its overseas troops deployment in a way it could maximize effectiveness, he said.
Through the peace-keeping and rebuilding operations abroad, the South Korean military is amassing capacities and experiences to deal with any crisis situation in the Korean Peninsula, the general said. "With combat-readiness position firmly maintained against North Korea, the military will proactively take part in the overseas troops dispatch to contribute to the international society." (Yonhap)
3.The Five Principles of Participation in Peacekeeping Troops
The following principles have been arranged to ensure that participation in Peacekeeping Operations is in accordance with Article 9 of the Constitution.
(1) Agreement on a cease-fire shall have been reached among the parties to armed conflicts.
(2) Consent for the undertaking of UN Peacekeeping Operations as well as Japan’s participation in such operations shall have been obtained from the host countries as well as the parties to armed conflicts.
(3) The operations shall strictly maintain impartiality, not favoring any of the parties to armed conflicts.
(4) Should any of the requirements in the above-mentioned principles cease to be satisfied, the Government of Japan may withdraw Self-Defense Force (SDF) contingent.
(5) The use of weapons shall be limited to the minimum necessary to protect the lives of personnel, etc.
The "International Peace Cooperation Assignments" that Japan conducts refer to the following tasks implemented for United Nations Peacekeeping Operations, tasks provided below in (10) to (17) for International Humanitarian Relief Operations, and in (7) and (17) for International Election Observation Operations (Article 3, item 3).
(1) Monitoring the observance of cessation of armed conflicts or the implementation of relocation, withdrawal or demobilization of armed forces agreed upon among the Parties to armed conflicts;
(2) Stationing in and patrol of buffer zones and other areas demarcated to prevent the occurrence of armed conflicts;
(3) Inspection or identification of weapons and their parts carried in or out by vehicle or other means of transportation or on foot;
(4) Collection, storage or disposal of abandoned weapons and their parts;
(5) Assistance with the designation of cease-fire lines or other similar boundaries by the Parties to armed conflicts;
(6) Assistance with the exchange of prisoners-of-war among the Parties to armed conflicts;
(7) Observation or management of the fair execution of elections for a representative assembly, referendums or any other similar elections or voting;
(8) Provision of advice or guidance and supervision related to police administrative matters;
(9) Provision of advice or guidance related to administrative matters in addition to (8) above;
(10) Medical care including sanitation measures;
(11) Search or rescue of afflicted persons or assistance in their repatriation;
(12) Distribution of food, clothing, medical supplies and other daily necessities to afflicted persons;
(13) Installation of facilities or equipment to accommodate afflicted persons;
(14) Measures for the repair or maintenance of facilities or equipment damaged by conflicts, which are necessary for the daily life of afflicted persons;
(15) Measures for the restoration of the natural environment subjected to pollution and other damage due to conflicts;
(16) Transportation, storage or reservation, communication, construction, installation, inspection or repair of machines and other apparatuses in addition to what is listed in (1) to (15) above.
(17) Other tasks similar to those listed in (1) to (16) above as specified by Cabinet Order.
平成 22 年 9 月
A Survey of Japan’s Contribution to Peacebuilding: Timor-Leste as a Case 日本の平和構築への貢献についての調査：東ティモールを事例として
There are no other countries and areas where Japan’s combined support of peace cooperation and development assistance has been implemented in such frequency and continuity. Nevertheless, while there can be no doubt that Japan has engaged much in Timor-Leste, there is still ambiguity as to the final goal for which Japan is heading in its peacebuilding support. It is because that there have been a number of contributing countries dispatching a large scale of personnel in order to resolve the conflict of Timor-Leste, and they have shown stronger commitment than Japan. Putting it another way, Japan’s engagement in Timor-Leste may be interpreted as an ordinary one comparing to other contributors. With regard to the amount of development assistance, although it is sure that Japan has been ranked within the top 5 every year, its support has not been outstanding. It is not too far from the truth to say that Japan has not yet played a leading role in peacebuilding of Timor-Leste, forestalling other ambitious actors. Figures 1 and 2 probably can prove those hypotheses (see more detail, in Table 1 and 2). Japan wishes to be a “Peace Fostering Nation”. It is no exaggeration to say that the case of Timor-Leste seems to have been an ideal opportunity for Japan to be a protagonist. In spite of that, the efforts exerted so far still remain an unsettled question. That is how Japan tries to resolve conflicts and to settle peace in conflict-affected countries and areas. This point may well be left to argue.